PALESTINIAN AMERICAN RESEARCH CENTER The United States government identifies the security and stability of the Middle

East as of prime strategic importance. In that connection, resolution of the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians is a central goal of U.S. foreign policy. U.S. national interest will, therefore, be served by improving and expanding the community of American scholars knowledgeable about this conflict and about the broad range of Palestinian issues in which the conflict is embedded. The Palestinian American Research Center (PARC), established in 1998, is the sole U.S. center focused on providing research funding and field support to scholars studying Palestinian affairs. In the four years that it has been functioning, PARC has already made a noticeable difference through its support for field and archival research by American, Palestinian, Israeli, and other graduate students and postdoctoral researchers. PARC represents a consortium of fifteen U.S. colleges and universities and over 100 individual members. PARC is a non-profit organization that receives virtually all of its funding from U.S. public and private sources. The primary missions of PARC are to improve scholarship about Palestinian affairs, expand the pool of experts knowledgeable about the Palestinians, strengthen linkages between American and Palestinian research institutions and scholars, and enhance public knowledge about Palestinian-related issues. Over the next four years PARC aims to: * Expand the pool of scholars specialized in Palestinian studies by offering research fellowships focused on the social sciences, humanities, and policy-oriented development fields; * Enhance researchers' abilities to conduct research overseas on Palestinian-related issues by providing support services to scholars in the field; * Strengthen linkages among U.S. and Palestinian educational, cultural, and research institutions through cooperative research projects, sharing archival resources, and organizing lectures, exchanges, and other events; and * Develop on-line library resources and teaching modules to facilitate research and educational outreach that will enable students, teachers, civic groups, and business persons as well as academic and policy researchers to access up-to-date information on Palestine. To these ends, PARC has established administrative offices in the United States at Villanova University and Ramallah (the West Bank) and has obtained grants from the Ford and Rockefeller foundations to support the research competition and develop on-line resources. PARC appreciates the opportunity to apply for a second multi-year grant from the Department of Education to support its operational expenses and strengthen its on-line library resources. These funds will enable PARC to solidify its presence overseas and dramatically expand its on-line outreach and research programs.